Talk:Sarah Jane Brown

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Requested move 9 May 2015[edit]

The following is a closed discussion of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. Editors desiring to contest the closing decision should consider a move review. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the move request was: not moved. DrKiernan (talk) 19:05, 19 May 2015 (UTC)

Sarah Jane BrownSarah Brown (businesswoman and wife of Gordon Brown) – as per WP:UCRN
In business at "Hobsbawm Macaulay Communications" she was known as Sarah Brown
Women's Aid describe her role in various ways especially as Women's Aid Patron Sarah Brown
Maggie's Centres describe her as Sarah Brown. Honorary Patron
SHINE describe her as Patron Sarah Brown
WHITE RIBBON ALLIANCE describe her as: Global Patron, Sarah Brown
She published as Sarah Brown
I don't know when or how she has been described as Sarah Jane Brown.
As a parallel to Janes, see Wikipedia:List of Johns whose Britannica article titles contain broad description
GregKaye 12:32, 9 May 2015 (UTC)

Note: The original submitted RM (after a few iterations of refinement before anyone responded) had a mismatch between the template parameter (suggesting "charity patron") and the text description (suggesting "businesswoman and wife of Gordon Brown". I'm not sure which suggestion was intended, but they should presumably match each other. If the submitter wanted to suggest that both be considered, the text should be altered to reflect that. —BarrelProof (talk) 16:58, 9 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose - I knew it was only a matter of time before one of the Clinton RM agitators tried this one again. A consensus of editors settled on using the subject's middle name as a compromise method to disambiguate her from other Sarah Browns. It was found that disabiguating by profession was too obscure and disambiguating by marital relation too problematic, so "Jane" was the best choice. Tarc (talk) 13:05, 9 May 2015 (UTC)
Tarc I don't know how you can call people with the majority view in a discussion "agitators". Can you please cite references as to where she is called something other than "Sarah Brown". How does it give any respect to a person to call them by a name that they do not, as far as I can tell, use for themselves? We have no remit to make things up. The first two criteria presented in wp:at are recognisability and naturalness and we need to choose titling to suit. Please, unless you can justify your comment, strike your POV and WP:POINTy comment re: "agitators". 13:37, 9 May 2015 edited GregKaye 16:02, 9 May 2015 (UTC)
The answer to your question can be found in the last RM, where it was decided that usage of the subject's middle name in sources was not relevant; the fact that it exists was sufficient enough for usage in the title. It was the best of many sub-par choices. Tarc (talk) 14:55, 9 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Tarc AGAIN, unless you can justify your comment, strike your POV and WP:POINTy comment re: "agitators".
What, if anything, do you consider to be "sub-par" in the current proposal. My original proposal here was for: Sarah Brown (charity patron). What, if anything, would you consider to be "sub-par" in that. I don't personally think we should risk disrespecting an individual by calling them by a name that, as far as I can see, they have not called themselves. As per the discussion User talk:Jimbo Wales#Hillary Rodham Clinton → Hillary Clinton move request I guess I can again follow the blatant WP:OR route and ask for clarification to be sought on the subject's preference as to designation.
However this seems to me to be ridiculous. In every place she has either presented herself or been presented as "Sarah Brown" I do not think that it is the role of Wikipedia to rewrite history. GregKaye 15:12, 9 May 2015 (UTC)
Greg, this is a bad-faith, ill-informed proposal; nothing will be stricken. I have informed you as to why the current title is the product of consensus and compromise, despite the best efforts of one of your comrades born2cycle to derail the last Sarah Brown RM...he was even close to a topic ban by admin JzG IIRC...the choice of Jane as a disambig was supported by most participants. Tarc (talk) 17:06, 9 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose, and this is without a doubt the worst suggested parenthetical disambig ever proposed in Wikipedia's history. Resolute 14:57, 9 May 2015 (UTC)
Reso Please consider the results in news.
"1 result" for "Sarah Jane Brown" AND ("Hobsbawm Macaulay Communications" OR "Women's Aid" OR "Maggie's Centres" OR "WHITE RIBBON ALLIANCE" OR "10 Downing Street" OR "Gordon Brown")
and, in that result the name could not even be found. What do you think of the Sarah Brown (charity patron) suggestion? GregKaye 15:24, 9 May 2015 (UTC)
I think it is time that we stopped wasting time on this. Resolute 15:28, 9 May 2015 (UTC)
This article deals with a living person who presents herself and who is widely presented as "Sarah Brown" and who we present as "Sarah jane Brown". GregKaye 07:51, 13 May 2015 (UTC)
No shit? Yes Greg, we are all aware of the circumstances here. And you don't need to WP:BLUDGEON the discussion by responding to literally every comment made by everyone else. If you're that insecure in your argument that you don't think it will stand up on its own, don't make it in the first place. Resolute 13:43, 13 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Support Sarah Brown (charity patron). Sarah Jane is a common collocation by itself; its use in the article title incorrectly implies that the subject is commonly known as "Sarah Jane" Brown. bd2412 T 16:19, 9 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Comment see search on jane. Honestly I don't think we can continue to make shit up. GregKaye 16:21, 9 May 2015 (UTC)
  • oppose That’s a far too complex way to disambiguate this or any other article, while just her role as a business person (or charity patron) is not enough. As it is is by far the best approach, precise without focussing on just one or other of her reasons for notability.--JohnBlackburnewordsdeeds 17:11, 9 May 2015 (UTC) "sarah brown" gets to "Page 32 of 312 results" (the site has a total of 410 pages) patron gets to "Page 2 of 17 results" presents the text: "In Publication: In a warm, personal memoir about life at 10 Downing Street, Sarah Brown shares her experiences as the wife of the British Prime Minister."
GregKaye 17:58, 9 May 2015 (UTC)
  • OpposeOnly those proposing the disambiguation will remember it, no one will ever search for the article using that mouthful, and anyone who does would know the topic well enough to find it anyway.--KTo288 (talk) 18:09, 9 May 2015 (UTC)
KTo288 people will search for "Sarah Brown" as her name, the regular name that she continually uses, the kind of thing that is referred to within WP:AT#Use commonly recognizable names where it says: "Wikipedia prefers the name that is most commonly used (as determined by its prevalence in reliable English-language sources) as such names will be the most recognizable and the most natural." This is the name she uses. Why are we denying her her name? GregKaye 18:16, 9 May 2015 (UTC)

The tag at reads: "Sarah Brown@SarahBrownUK" and makes no reference to "jane" makes no reference to "jane"
Its no wonder people say Wikipedia is inaccurate. GregKaye 18:34, 9 May 2015 (UTC)

I'm opposing the overwordy and ugly appelation of (businesswoman and wife of Gordon Brown), if the arguments were for plain Sarah Brown that would be annother matter, but because there are other individuals of thge samename that move cannot be made. The problem in this case is that the individual is best known as the spouse of Gordon Bown but disambiguating in this way to many, myself included, is sexist. We are not a newspaper or magazine, when reading articles in such there is no need to disambiguate amongst the many possible individuals it could be, in this example a compromise has been made that in my opinion works well at balancing correctness and uniqueness without being ugly. The suggested move title is another set of compromises and choices, you gain having the name at Sarah Brown at the cost of a complex, wordy, somewhat sexist and ugly disambiguation in the title. Are there other choices and compromises that can or could be made sure there are. For example at korean wiki one common way to disambiguate between people with the same name is to just use the year of birth e.g. Sarah Brown (1963), and to place all the disambiguating information into the disambiguation page, however other than for Royal Navy ships its not how we normally disambiguate here at en, so for me the current compromise seems to be the best one. --KTo288 (talk) 19:20, 9 May 2015 (UTC)
KTo288 I am aware of the point and for on similar grounds of recognition of the person I was one of the strongest advocates of the proposal Pontius Pilate's wifeWife of Pontius Pilate. Gordon Brown was arguably an ugly man but yet a statesman. Sarah Brown came to prominence as the spouse of Gordon and since his acceptance speech from about four elections ago, it was clear that he was a contender. There is nothing ugly in the appellation. Foremost she it describes her as a business woman.
as far as overwordy is concerned please see, for example, the Britannica article for:
I personally see no problem in full description. GregKaye 20:23, 9 May 2015 (UTC)
You do realize that every utterance of the "source X makes no reference to Jane" is not a valid argument, yes? See the past RM for why. Tarc (talk) 19:05, 9 May 2015 (UTC)
You do realise that Wikipedia has a policy to use names as they are used in the real world, yes? See WP:AT#Use commonly recognizable names for why. GregKaye 20:04, 9 May 2015 (UTC)
WP:IAR is a pillar of the project, which when justified, trumps policy. This exception was endorsed in a previous RM, thus is the bar you have to meet here; so far, your efforts are underwhelming. Tarc (talk) 20:17, 9 May 2015 (UTC)
I'm glad you acknowledge the relevance of IAR. GregKaye 20:27, 9 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose, and recommend a speedy "snow" closure. This move is patently not going to happen. Newyorkbrad (talk) 20:43, 9 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose clearly a very poor use of a disambiguator to make a very long title, when we have a very short title already. Further, this page's name and disambiguator has been discussed a multitude of times with better choices than this. -- (talk) 23:05, 9 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Close and resubmit for Sarah Brown (charity patron) subject is known as "wife of Gordon Brown" not "Sarah Jane" Brown but we cannot refer to someone notable for being a wife of someone as (wife of...) it's shameful. In ictu oculi (talk) 23:26, 9 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose and a 2 year moratorium on another discussion. Rationale: Good grief. --Floquenbeam (talk) 23:56, 9 May 2015 (UTC)
Floquenbeam the rationale is that "Sarah Brown" is consistently presented and consistently presents herself as "Sarah Brown". Three editors have proposed Sarah Brown (charity patron) and you instantly want a moratorium. How does your suggestion in any way meet the needs of an encyclopedia? "good grief" indeed. GregKaye 04:36, 10 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose. The ball's in her court really. She can start making more use of her middle name or she can do something more noteworthy than being married to a former Prime Minister. If she wants to drag her feet about it, that's up to her, but I don't see why we should let it be our problem. Formerip (talk) 00:07, 10 May 2015 (UTC)
Formerip she is notable as being "Sarah Brown". Why are you denying her of her name? This is not how she or reliable source uses it. GregKaye 04:40, 10 May 2015 (UTC)
I'm not denying anyone anything. If you think it would stand any sort of chance, propose a move to "Sarah Brown", and I'll promise to stay out of it. Formerip (talk) 14:04, 10 May 2015 (UTC)
At the least Sarah Brown (politician) is very notable as a transgender activist. GregKaye 07:21, 13 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose move and support indef of OP per WP:CIR. Johnuniq (talk) 04:43, 10 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Comment when you type something like "Sarah Bro" into the search bar the options received are:
Johnuniq according to your perception not giving recognition to the the "First Lady" role of Spouse of the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, how is it in any way respectful to leave the situation as it is?? 05:01, 10 May 2015 edited GregKaye 14:21, 10 May 2015 (UTC)
What has changed since the last RM that necessitates reopening the matter? Tarc (talk) 14:45, 10 May 2015 (UTC)
Actual consideration of content that has actually been presented by the subject is arguably of great importance. Beyond failing to acknowledging a major achievement in fulfilling a first lady type role, no one has really given much attention to the things that the subject has actually said. Also, as you know, the previous RM was far from unanimous. Relevant content that I have presented and which has been censored against talk page guidelines below is as follows:

There may be no ideal title for this article but I cannot see that "Sarah Jane Brown" is it. "sarah brown" gets to "Page 32 of 312 results" (the site has a total of 410 pages) patron gets to "Page 2 of 17 results" presents the text: "In Publication: In a warm, personal memoir about life at 10 Downing Street, Sarah Brown shares her experiences as the wife of the British Prime Minister."

In connection to business at "Hobsbawm Macaulay Communications" she is referenced either as Sarah Macaulay or as Sarah Brown
Women's Aid describe her role in various ways especially as Women's Aid Patron Sarah Brown
Maggie's Centres describe her as Sarah Brown. Honorary Patron
SHINE describe her as Patron Sarah Brown
WHITE RIBBON ALLIANCE describe her as: Global Patron, Sarah Brown
She published as Sarah Brown
I don't know when or how she has been described as Sarah Jane Brown.

The tag at reads: "Sarah Brown@SarahBrownUK" and makes no reference to "jane" makes no reference to "jane"

Early excerpts from : Behind the Black Door by: "Sarah Jane Brown" inclusive of "wife", "husband" and "Spouse" are:

  • Preface
In writing this book, I hope to cast a light on the role of Prime Minister's spouse and all that it entails. As the wife of Gordon Brown, I spent three years living and working at Number 10 Downing Street. ...
I was advised before starting at Number 10 that there is no guidebook for what to do, only a big rulebook of what not to do. The 'not to' bit seemed to be just commonsense, but the blank page or what a PM's spouse can do, and perhaps even should do was a welcome opportunity to start from scratch. There is no formal spouse job to step into, no permanent office, no salary, no allowance, no pre-set duties or official role, not even an official title, but I have ten years' experience in hosting receptions and dinners as first the girlfriend, then the wife, of the Chancellor of the Exchequer to stand me in good stead.
... I supported Gordon and the kids and focussed completely on the causes and campaigns closest to my heart... page ix
  • I ... cannot predict how different life will be moving from number 11, Downing Street, as wife of the Chancellor of the Exchequer, to Number 10, as wife of the Prime Minister. page 2
  • ... in all my years as wife of the Chancellor of the Exchequer ... page 9
  • I'm starting to understand why being WPM (Wife of the Prime Minister - I think that Dennis Thatcher forged his own path as the one male exception so far) feels so tricky. I have no exact status, no official position, masses of conflicting expectations both internally and externally, and a terrible suspicion that at any moment a great mistake will be made by ME!
Over the last few weeks, during Gordon's leadership campaigning time, it was clear that he would arrive with the support of pretty much all the Labour MPs, and so I turned my attention to what I would do once he was made leader. I see my role as supportive, of course; for government events, both professionally and personally, as my husband takes on an even bigger job than the one he had before. I also see - and I look to all my predecessors for this - that there is an opportunity to ues the visibility, platform and privilege of being at 10 Downing Street to use my efforts to do something useful and good. I don't waht to over-complicate things, but I am very clear that I can have a voice for change if I don't step on any policy-making toes. I have to get the balance right between not being an elected politician myself, while making good use of my own abilities and professional experience. I know that whatever happens, a watchful media will report on my successes, or otherwise. It is not without a degree of personal stress that I recognise that failure on my part will make a good news story, but I am an 'eyes forward' kind of girl and prepared to take the risk. page 15

Please consider that all of this information came direcly from the subject herself.

As far as I am concerned "Sarah Brown" is clearly a self-possessed person in her own right who has served my country both in her roles including as wife / spouse of the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom and in the other functions that she performed which arguably made best use of this connection. She clearly played a substantial role in her husband in gaining various political positions and has, from what I have seen, done a great job of making the best of her various situations first as "Sarah Macaulay" and then as "Sarah Brown".

In its article: Wife is defined as : "a [[female]] [[Significant other|partner]] in a continuing marital relationship."

I suspect that that if "partner" had been directly used as the operative reference that there would have been little or no controversy. I further think that it is fair to argue that there is every reason to believe that the Brown's very strongly scribe to the philosophy of partnership even to the extent of presenting the joint website and facebook pages as:

Since, in my view, editors here are giving little heed to the concepts of WP:AT#Use commonly recognisable name I think that a similar to that of Hillary Diane Rodham/Hillary Clinton/Hillary Rodham Clinton might apply. In this I would suggest that there is a case for asking "Sarah Brown"/"Sarah Jane Brown" how she would like to have her Wikipedia article presented and suggest that someone, ideally neutral to the main arguments of related discussions, get in contact with "Sarah Brown" perhaps by twitter or via any related charity, or the Browns by some other means.

I also see no reason why we cannot use a Sarah Brown (foo and bar) designation has been the case with the previously mentioned Britannica designation of Sarah Winnemucca (Native American educator, author and lecturer)

Even with less acknowledgement of the partnership role in marriage Wikipedia presents articles such as Justin Cooper (aide). Is that derogatory? There is nothing wrong with presenting someone as .. (significant other of important person) so as, amongst other achievements, acknowledge contributions made here as well. GregKaye 07:47, 13 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose This is silly. - Cwobeel (talk) 14:49, 10 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose. The current title is imperfect, but an enormous amount of careful attention and discussion in previous debates has led to the conclusion that the alternatives are even more so. (The length, clunky, "wife of" form that the nominator proposes is particularly poor.) To discard the compromise that gave us the current title and restart the process again would be a colossal waste, and to judge from responses so far is going absolutely nowhere. Suggest closing this proposal due to heavy WP:SNOW. ╠╣uw [talk] 19:23, 10 May 2015 (UTC)
I tried to close the discussion also trying to open a discussion to see if a suitable alternative could be agreed with the accompanying suggestion that someone get in contact with Sarah Brown to see if she has a preference with regard to designation. GregKaye 00:19, 11 May 2015 (UTC)
We don't ask subjects of biographies about their preferences, and this discussion is not needed given the previous one. This discussion should be closed without delay per WP:SNOW. - Cwobeel (talk) 01:49, 11 May 2015 (UTC)
I absolutely agree with the close of the discussion which was something I tried to do. A major case presented in the Hillary Clinton RMs related to a personal contact with the subject. GregKaye 02:15, 11 May 2015 (UTC)
The Clinton and Brown cases aren't really equivalent: the Clinton debate deals with the wide-spread use of differing forms of her name outside of Wikipedia, whereas the Brown debate centers more on an internal technical problem inside Wikipedia (i.e., how do we title Sarah Brown's article given that we have multiple Sarah Brown articles?). That's why Clinton's input was useful to that problem but why Brown's would probably be a lot less so to this one. ╠╣uw [talk] 17:10, 12 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose w/ 2 year moratorium on future RMs. Per Huwmanbeing & earlier discussions. For what it's worth, since she is not a notable businesswoman (if that's all she was notable for, the article would be deleted) and "wife of" is suboptimal, the only alternate title worth a darn is Sarah Brown (born 1963), since year disambiguator is a well-known last resort that's perfectly neutral (if rather unhelpful). SnowFire (talk) 22:39, 11 May 2015 (UTC)
Fine! Use that. She is not commonly known as "Sarah Jane Brown". Please do not go against all that she says about herself and that is inclusive of a great deal of the censored content in the collapsed box below. GregKaye 20:46, 12 May 2015 (UTC)
To be clear, I still prefer "Sarah Jane Brown", just "born 1963" isn't an automatic no for a disambiguator and I'd be much less opposed to it. And yes, I and most of the other opposers do so with the full knowledge that she goes by "Sarah Brown" not by "Sarah Jane Brown." SnowFire (talk) 05:34, 13 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Rename to Sarah Brown (born 1963) The current title is utterly obscure and not the name by which the subject is know at all. It should be properly disambiguated and this seems the only one that doesn't bring objections. It would hardly be the first by year disambiguation. Timrollpickering (talk) 09:16, 13 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Neutral I support changing this title, which clearly does not have consensus support for reasons explained above, but not to the proposed title, which is too obviously contrived. I think we need to have a multiple-choice RM for this difficult case. --В²C 23:26, 13 May 2015 (UTC) See below. --В²C 16:24, 14 May 2015 (UTC)
  • I think I am on record as supporting Sarah Brown (née Macaulay) (as more recognizable, contains the "Macauley" by which she was for some time primarily known, sources have used all three names frequently used to identify her, does not imply subservience to a husband), but the burden of any nomination is to overturn the consensus of RM6 (Links from the talk page header: Talk:Sarah_Jane_Brown/Archive_2#Requested_move_6_.28June_2013.29, endorsed at Wikipedia:Move_review/Log/2013_June#Sarah_Jane_Brown. Any new nomination should speak directly to the points raised in previous RMs, especially RM6 and it's review. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 23:43, 13 May 2015 (UTC)
    • Coming out more strongly in support of Sarah Brown (née Macaulay). The subject has been known as "Sarah Brown" and "Sarah Macaulay". No source, nor herself, uses Sarah Macaulay Brown, and so the Macaulay belongs in parentheses. The word "née" is quite acceptable in English and occurs in many Wikipedia titles. Sarah Brown, née Macaulay is a style sometimes seen elsewhere, but not much at Wikipedia. In all of the past RMs, Sarah Brown (née Macaulay) has received very little attention, with so much noise directed against certain other suggestions. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 05:05, 15 May 2015 (UTC)
      • On reading all the archives, I see that Sarah Brown (née Macaulay) has been frequently mentioned suggested and supported. Very few spoke against it, and the few instances of argument are readily disputable. This title has actually been used by a reputable source here. What there was not a consensus for was that the current Sarah Jane Brown in unacceptable. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 05:35, 18 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose and extend moratorium. --Carnildo (talk) 03:08, 14 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Support proposed title as better than the the current misleading title, but first choice is Sarah Brown (née Macaulay) per SmokeyJoe, primarily per recognizable. Second choice is probably Sarah Brown (born 1963). One problem with the current title, and why it needs to change, is because using Jane as the disambiguator is so unrecognizable (based on usage) that it could be misconstrued to be there to disambiguate for this Sarah Brown! It's like using Hillary Diane Clinton, Margaret Hilda Thatcher, Indira Priyadarshini Gandhi, Elizabeth Ann Ford or Nancy Frances Reagan for titles. These are far less recognizable than the actual titles. The proposed title is long, clumsy and contrived, but at least it's not wrong or misleading. It's a step in the right direction, and that's why I decided to support it. I still think we need a multiple-choice RFC.

    I oppose all discussion moratoriums on principle. --В²C 16:24, 14 May 2015 (UTC)

    • Regarding your second choice, note that it had its run at RM #3. Re-reading that discussion, it kind of puts a wet blanket on any hope of enthusiasm for that title. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 05:11, 15 May 2015 (UTC)
  • My word, deja vu all over again! If we are still thinking of moving this page (*if*) then jumping straight to a vote is the wrong approach. As I said over a year ago, what we need is a proper discussion of the pros and cons of this page title and the various possible alternatives; it would even be helpful if someone could compile an impartial summary of the debate to date. Let me repeat what I said at over a year ago: "Sarah Jane Brown is her actual name, although not her "common name", but in the absence of consensus for a parenthetical descriptor, her own middle name provides a natural disambiguator. That said, it is not well recognised or used outside Wikipedia, and the reader could be forgiven for thinking her preferred forename was "Sarah Jane". ... Sarah Brown (née Macaulay) is a good alternative, and on reflection I think that is a probably a better solution here. (If we object to the French, we could say Sarah Brown (born Macaulay) or Sarah Brown (formerly Macaulay)." On further reflection, Sarah Brown (born 1963) could also work, and I'd marginally prefer that to the current title, although few people know her date of birth or her middle name. There does seem to be evidence that she is frequently linked to her former (pre-marriage) surname, and with Hobsbawm Macaulay, so I'd prefer one of the various "former name" titles. Perhaps we can just close this misguided move request now, and have the discussion on the alternatives in a less time-pressured manner? I have no doubt that we can identify several least-worst contenders in short order, and then choose between them. That said, Sarah Brown (businesswoman and wife of Gordon Brown) is one of the worst suggestions I have seen. Ferma (talk) 17:04, 14 May 2015 (UTC)
    • In my experience unless there is an active proposal which can change something you will get very low participation. Therefore I believe the best course of action is an RM formulated as a survey with multiple options where people opine on their, say, top three choices, and why. From that we should be able to discern a best choice. Perhaps this current RM can be closed per SNOW while and those interested can compile such a survey? --В²C 18:03, 14 May 2015 (UTC)
      You're describing the very RM that led to Sarah Jane Brown in the first place:
      "This proposal asks two questions: Should the page be moved? If so, what is your preferred title? [List of options]."
      ╠╣uw [talk] 19:54, 14 May 2015 (UTC)
      That was the right idea. We need to give it another shot incorporating a lot of the pros and cons that have been identified for each of the candidate titles since then, and include some that were not considered there. --В²C 20:35, 14 May 2015 (UTC)
And I have accordingly hatted this and re-opened the 9 May discussion.--JohnBlackburnewordsdeeds 11:49, 10 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose. There is nothing new in the nominators analysis, and no new solution presented. RM mongering is disruptive. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 21:36, 10 May 2015 (UTC)
SmokeyJoe It would be helpful if you could point to places in previous discussion in which direct quotations from the subject have previously been presented. I know that a 05:13, 12 June 2013 edit was made in the original Sarah Brown (wife of Gordon Brown) → ? discussion that made reference to the book that was published under the authorship of "Sarah Brown" but I do not see where actual content is presented. To me the above collapse looks like censorship of content that editors, for whatever reason, do not want to be presented for consideration. GregKaye 01:00, 11 May 2015 (UTC)
GregKaye, your insistence on responding to pretty much everyone who comments is disrupting the discussion. It also suggests that you have become overly fixated on this naming issue, which is of limited importance, and could use a break from thinking about it. I suggest that you step away from this page for at least a few days. Newyorkbrad (talk) 01:06, 11 May 2015 (UTC)
I have not seen any reliable source for the subject's preference, given that "Sarah Brown" is not available. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 01:10, 11 May 2015 (UTC)
Newyorkbrad Sarah Brown self presents as Sarah Brown and, yes, I personally think that it is unencyclopedic to describe her as "Sarah Jane Brown". I have presented content that directly presents what that subject herself says and that has been collapsed. If other editors have valid arguments against the things that I am saying then let them present them. Please see: Wikipedia:What Wikipedia is not#Wikipedia is not censored. There is nothing that I have said that is not reasonable. I have responded to 4 of the 10 comments.
SmokeyJoe There is nothing wrong with presenting here what the subject says herself. Of course "Sarah Brown" is available via the simple application of any form of suitable disambiguation. GregKaye 01:20, 11 May 2015 (UTC)
GregKaye, what is unreasonable is your monomaniacal obsession with this naming discussion, and if it persists, I'm going to go to a noticeboard and suggest that you be removed from the page. 01:28, 11 May 2015 (UTC)
Newyorkbrad Just to be clear, there is nothing specific that you are saying is unreasonable yet the above content, quotations from the subject, has been collapsed. I tried to withdraw the RM. GregKaye 01:36, 11 May 2015 (UTC)
GregKaye, you are merely persisting with a line of argument already covered in previous RMs. The community effectively decided that any of the various awkward parenthetical disambiguations are not better than including the middle name "Jane". In the above thread, you proposed a particularly poor version of an awkward parenthetical disambiguation, one that includes with widely and strongly rejected "wife of" element. I am feeling very sure that you are not seeing anything more clearly than anyone previously, and urge you to drop this. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 01:46, 11 May 2015 (UTC)
SmokeyJoe please, I was quite happy to take a back step. I withdrew the RM and began I hoped an open discussion to see if an option could be found that worked on the commonly used base of "Sarah Brown". Two editors have supported such an option. I have also, I think, fairly stated.
  • "Since, in my view, editors here are giving little heed to the concepts of WP:AT#Use commonly recognisable name I think that a similar to that of Hillary Diane Rodham/Hillary Clinton/Hillary Rodham Clinton might apply. In this I would suggest that there is a case for asking "Sarah Brown"/"Sarah Jane Brown" how she would like to have her Wikipedia article presented and suggest that someone, ideally neutral to the main arguments of related discussions, get in contact with "Sarah Brown" perhaps by twitter or via any related charity, or the Browns by some other means."
I would be happy for this to be followed but the content presenting this suggestion has been collapsed. GregKaye 02:06, 11 May 2015 (UTC)

The above discussion is preserved as an archive of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page or in a move review. No further edits should be made to this section.

Proposal: Another moratorium[edit]


It seems there's sufficient consensus to enact a moratorium on move requests. Since most of those supporting this seem to believe more than 6 months (e.g., 1 year) is more appropriate, and because !voter fatigue is the primary issue at hand, it seems sane to just round to 1 year for now. While those in opposition believe there isn't consensus for the current title, this gives more credence to this being an intractable content dispute (well, move dispute), for which the normal policy is to freeze the page in either the current, clearly-agreed-to-be-least-controversial, and/or the before-disputed-change version—even if that's not the ideal version. --slakrtalk / 04:22, 13 June 2015 (UTC)

The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Another failed move request. I count five attempts to move the article from the current name that have not succeeded, in less than a year, and none seems likely to succeed any time soon. So like the last one at /Archive 7 I propose a moratorium on further move requests for another six months, to pre-emptively save the time of editors.--JohnBlackburnewordsdeeds 20:10, 19 May 2015 (UTC)

  • Support but would prefer 1 year, possibly 2. Tarc (talk) 21:38, 19 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Support. That or topic ban the people who keep advocating the move. Guy (Help!) 22:38, 19 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose instead the problem should be, and can be, instantly solved. What is wrong with Sarah Brown (born 1963) which has been supported by several voters in the above discussion? Fact is, she doesn't use Jane, and apparently abhors it. So why should Wikipedia step on her toes when it is easy and cost-free to just move the article to any odd name which is not bulky or sexist? It absolutely beats me that people could spend years on a discussion like this. For comparison: we have John Williams (born 1736). I'm seriously thinking about being bold here, or is it move-protected? Kraxler (talk) 23:27, 19 May 2015 (UTC)
    You would be reverted in a heartbeat. Tarc (talk) 23:33, 19 May 2015 (UTC)
So what about office action, then. Common sense seems to have been abandoned in this matter, and is being blocked from being re-introduced by a bunch of ... (Note that I didn't vote at any of the previous RfCs, I've been looking on for some time, though, being appalled that something like this is possible at Wikipedia.) And as a side note (like Newyorkbrad, who makes a forecast on the outcome of the above request, instead of arguing the issue) I'll predict that if this proposal passes, another proposal will be made post-haste to overturn it. Well, there's another time-sink. And I think I'll risk being reverted. As Alan Parsons said: Try Anything Once. Face-smile.svg Kraxler (talk) 00:53, 20 May 2015 (UTC)
Just another question: Whatever has become of WP:DROPTHESTICK? I suggest you all do. Right now. Just forget that this article exists. And move on. Good night. Kraxler (talk) 00:58, 20 May 2015 (UTC)
I would suggest you take your own advice re: "move on"; this article's title history is far too contentious for any one editor to just move unilaterally. Tarc (talk) 01:02, 20 May 2015 (UTC)
I'd agree. Please seek consensus before any attempts to move this article. - Cwobeel (talk) 01:07, 20 May 2015 (UTC)
  • There is nothing particularly "wrong" with any of:
Sarah Brown (born 1963)
Sarah Brown (born Macaulay)
Sarah Brown (née Macaulay)
Sarah (Macaulay) Brown
or even Sarah Jane Brown per evidence in past closed discussions.
The problem as I see it is ill-considered half-baked unilateral random proposals, most evident in RM#9. RMs that follow previous extensive RMs should be required to all of the following:
  • A serious proposal
  • A summary of all previous proposals, and a statement as to why this new one is different
  • A seconder
--SmokeyJoe (talk) 00:29, 20 May 2015 (UTC)
  • support at least 1 year, better 2 per Tarc. - Cwobeel (talk) 00:27, 20 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Support, would prefer at least one year. --Carnildo (talk) 02:00, 20 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Support, would prefer at least one year. Johnuniq (talk) 02:48, 20 May 2015 (UTC)
  • I came here to support another moratorium on move discussions, as repeated RMs on the same article are a timesink. However, my attention was caught by the statement that the article subject "apparently abhors" the designation "Sarah Jane Brown." Unlike the case with Hillary (Rodham) Clinton, there is no campaign organization through whom the subject's preference can be ascertained, but if Ms. Brown has asserted a strong dislike of the current title, that does strike me as relevant information. Is there a source in support of this claim? Newyorkbrad (talk) 03:05, 20 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Yes. I saw those sentiments long ago, but have been unable to find a source. It may be falsely attributed, the subject does not seem particularly prone to abhorations. I think that any indication of subject preference here should tip the balance, but that in the lack of verifiable subject preference, it is difficult. Personally, I still support a parenthetical disambiguation including "Macaulay", because she was once notable as Sarah Macaulay. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 04:45, 20 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Support at least 1 year. For RMs like this to repeat much more frequently than that is wasteful. ╠╣uw [talk] 09:29, 20 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Support w/ proviso that if a credible source can be produced that indicates the subject's distaste for "Sarah Jane Brown", then the moratorium is lifted. SnowFire (talk) 06:47, 22 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Support w/ proviso as per SnowFire. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 07:34, 22 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose on principle as explained in my FAQ (bottom). But more importantly this title clearly has no consensus support. What we have not had is a bonafide multiple choice RM since the one that produced this current title (under dubious reasoning). I think that approach needs another shot. Something like everybody can indicate their favorite and least favorite, to help find the most acceptable/least unacceptable. --В²C 19:09, 22 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Support – This nonsense needs to stop. RGloucester 13:14, 24 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Support 2 year moratorium. I said this a week or two ago, a couple of sections above, but since we're voting/polling, I'll say it again in this section. Repeated rehashing of something that everyone has a different opinion about, but which doesn't really matter, is disruptive. Please don't make this the new talk:yogurt. --Floquenbeam (talk) 14:04, 26 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose per Kraxler and Born2Cycle. Clearly the current name is not commonly used by reliable sources, and so most people who are even reasonably familiar with Mrs. Brown have no idea what her middle name is. That should be our main concern. --GRuban (talk) 21:34, 27 May 2015 (UTC)
No, our main concern should be accuracy and neutrality. Many of the alternatives proposed sacrificed neutrality for "a foolish consistency". Guy (Help!) 09:41, 28 May 2015 (UTC)
That's two. Amongst our main concerns are accuracy, neutrality, usage by reliable sources ... and nice red uniforms. I'll come in again.. --GRuban (talk) 19:08, 28 May 2015 (UTC)
There is no reason to flush WP:RECOGNIZABILITY down the loo here. We can have a title that is accurate, neutral and recognizable, if people would stop spending energy on stopping discussion and instead focused on coming up with a title that has consensus and policy support. --В²C 01:01, 29 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Support. Prefer 1 or 2 years. --Anthonyhcole (talk · contribs · email) 00:20, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose the current title is unencyclopedic. She is not known as Sarah Jane Brown. Please look for references. There are several options that potentially work and a choice should be made between one of them. GregKaye 18:15, 9 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Support, but agree with SnowFire's exception. The amount of editor time two users have managed to waste on just this latest round is enough evidence that the stick needs to be forced out of their hands. Maybe next year they will come up with a well thought out proposal for once, instead of a hamfisted mess or the tedious shrill of "change it because I don't accept it". Resolute 19:39, 9 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose, over a year ago I proposed Sarah Brown (charity director) with a decent argumentation here. Every time I think about it and come to this page there's an active moratorium, a RM has just happened, or one is going on for a page name less likely to succeed. I still think the disambiguator-derived-from-the-disambiguation-page-without-anyone-having-proposed-it-here is a solution likely to satisfy more editors (with increased guidance conformity as a plus) than the current middle name solution. So I'd like to propose to initiate a WP:RM to that effect ASAP, before any other less likely choices are presented via RM. --Francis Schonken (talk) 10:31, 11 June 2015 (UTC)

The discussion above is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.


I am surprised so many people appear to think Sarah Jane Brown is the best possible title for this article - indeed, to such an extent that no discussion should be entertained for another year.

"five attempts to move the article from the current name that have not succeeded, in less than a year" is not quite right. Perhaps I have missed a couple, but I can only see five move requests since the article was moved to its current title in June 2013, and only three of those were within the last year, since May 2014. (We are in May 2015, right?)

Just to recap the history: after the successful move request RM6 (and subsequent review) in June/July 2013, there have been:

  • about 9 months later, two successive and rapidly closed move requests in April 2014;
  • another 6 months after that, two further move requests in early October 2014;
  • then another six month gap before the most recent move request, RM11, just closed.

It is a shame so many of these move requests have proposed titles that have so little chance of success: after one of the possible titles was picked in RM6 in June 2013 (in a discussion where there was a clear consensus for a move but less clarity of the best destination), there has been little further consideration of the other alternatives that were suggested and supported in that discussion. Two of the five subsequent move requests suggested that Sarah Jane Brown should be moved to Sarah Brown as the primary topic, a proposal that was rejected both times (rightly so, in my view); two others were closed within a day; and the more recent move request was bound to fail because the suggested title was just plain daft. The opportunity for a proper discussion last October was lost due to the previous moratorium.

In my view, the current title is far from ideal. Her first name is not "Sarah Jane", and she hardly ever uses her own middle name. That said, I have not seen any evidence that she abhors her middle name: it is apparently a family name, and her first (and very sadly short-lived) child was named "Jennifer Jane".[1] Her own date of birth and her own family name before her marriage are just as clearly distinguishing characteristics of her as a person as is her middle name. She also shares her full name, Sarah Jane Brown, with at least one person, a Welsh artist born in 1970, who appears frequently in the Google searches and could cross the threshold of notability one day, but probably not yet.[2][3]

Throughout, a number of people have suggested at least two alternatives that have some level of support, namely:

What I would like to see is a full move request for either or preferably both of these options, with participants indicating which of the three possibilities (the status quo, or one of these two alternatives) they think is best (or least worst). Once we have done that, with a clear answer either way, I would gladly support having a further moratorium of at least a year, so everyone can move on and do something less boring instead. Ferma (talk) 19:19, 20 May 2015 (UTC)

IIRC reference to Macaulay was firmly rejected in the past discussions as paternalistic and inappropriate. The issue is not that this title is the best possible, but that relentless attempts to rename the article have failed to result in consensus. By now it looks very much like a case of keep on asking until you get the answer you want, and a moratorium is justified because otherwise not everybody wants to devote a substantial proportion of their wiki time to arguing about this, in perpetuity, or at least until those who cannot tolerate the current name either get their way or leave. Guy (Help!) 15:25, 21 May 2015 (UTC)
A reference to Macaulay was "firmly rejected"? Who by, and when? I see that a few people don't like it, in just the same way that a few people don't like the current title, but Sarah Brown has herself chosen to stop using her birth name and adopt a new family name. Looking back, I see quite a lot of support for "Macaulay", particularly in the most recent discussion and in June 2013, when "Macaulay" was supported by SmokeyJoe, Sionk, Jaytwist, GRuban, Jayen466, and me, with little explicit opposition; there was less support then for "born 1963", but some clearly prefer it and it is unarguably neutral.
The most recent move request was doomed to fail, but it would be unfortunate if that misfire prevented us having a proper discussion on the two realistic alternatives that have some measure of support. None of the move requests since June/July 2013 has properly considered them. If can get through a move request now, focussing on these realistic alternatives, I think we can reach an amicable consensus decision and close down this point of contention for some considerable time.
On relection, I think we can have a two-stage process - a run-off to ask which of the two alternatives is best (that is, "née/born/formerly Macaulay" and "born 1963") and then we can simply ask editors to pick which of the two options they prefer - "Jane", or the other one. And then we can stick with the result for at least a year (unless there is some unforeseen event that produces clear consensus for change before then). Ferma (talk) 17:22, 21 May 2015 (UTC)
I don't see how it was doomed to fail. Sure it was a poorly chosen name but from the discussion there was little support for any move, to that or to any other name. If there was a good, better alternative then it could have been proposed and if supported by enough people the move would have been to that. But with all the previous move discussions it's hard to imagine there is any name an editor could propose that hasn't been discussed already.
As for a 'two-stage process', such is generally a bad way to establish consensus. Why is "née/born/formerly Macaulay" one alternative not three? Why those two (or four) alternatives, there are many more other than the current name? Should there be a further vote to decide which two (or four or however many)? And so on. Given how contentious this matter can be answering all of those questions could easily waste far more editor time than the above RM. Better to stick to the approaches we now use, of discussion to arrive at consensus.--JohnBlackburnewordsdeeds 18:56, 21 May 2015 (UTC)
John Blackburne, you are using fallacious arguments and you are speculating about what might happen when, instead of actively trying to solve a problem. That's not good policy. The previous approach did not work, so we should use a different approach henceforth. That's dictated by common sense.
As to moratoriums: We all remember the Berlin Wall. It was built to hold on to an untenable state of things. It was hotly debated and criticized during the time it existed, and many people crossed it nevertheless. One thing it did not achieve: That things would quiet down and people would accept the status quo. I think people should learn from history... Kraxler (talk) 19:36, 21 May 2015 (UTC)
That you should equate the title of an article, which is entirely accurate but not to some people's liking, with decades of brutal oppression of the population of East Berlin, is very telling. You are right that a moratorium will not stop a few people obsessing over the title of this article (that would require them to acquire a sense of proportion, after all), but that't not what it's for. The purpose of a moratorium is to stop their obsession from perennially wasting other people's time. Guy (Help!) 14:56, 27 May 2015 (UTC)
Come on, Guy, I don't equate the article title to decades of oppression. By the way, I lived in East Germany, and felt the oppression which other people are just talking about. I mentioned the Berlin Wall as a historical example of a moratorium which did not prevent the problem from being solved eventually. It took 28 years, but it came down, and everybody is happy now. To quote examples from history must be allowed in intelligent debate. And I trust you know what a metaphor or other tools of language are intended to be used for. Kraxler (talk) 17:46, 27 May 2015 (UTC)
In these controversial title cases there are usually essentially two groups: those who stubbornly support retaining the current title which does not have consensus support, and those who support efforts to develop consensus support for a title. The former group constantly tries to derail the efforts of the latter group, including by accusing the latter group of wasting time and by supporting moratoriums. At Yoghurt/Yogurt the status quo stonewallers caused eight years of time wasting obstinate opposition before they were overwhelmed by logic and reason so that article could finally have a title with consensus support. How many years are the stonewallers going to delay in this case? --В²C 16:52, 27 May 2015 (UTC)
And looking at it from the other side, these debates are always beset by a small, dedicated group of zealots who completely reject any compromise and will incessantly argue for their position until they either drive all opposition away in frustration, or end up banned by ArbCom or the community. Resolute 16:58, 27 May 2015 (UTC)
The only title compromises I know of that ever worked out was US cities on the AP list being the only ones not requiring ", state", and Hellmann's and Best Foods. Both are very unique situations. This title is not that. Even what used to be the quintessential example of compromise title, Fixed-wing aircraft, with redirects from Airplane and Aeroplane, was eventually worked out. So was Sega Mega Drive/Sega Genesis. Consensus support for all but just a tiny few of our titles can and are worked out without compromise. It can be so for this title too. --В²C 18:28, 28 May 2015 (UTC)
You spent a great many words to prove my point with your very last sentence - a declaration that you are not willing to compromise. Resolute 22:34, 28 May 2015 (UTC)
What your continuous yammering about yogurt/yoghurt proves is, simply, that consensus can change. For 8 years you held a point-of-view that did not attract the support of the Wikipedia community, until they day that it did. Just like once upon a time the porn peddlers held WP:PORNBIO to a low, low bar of inclusion so that almost every two-bit tartlet who got a nomination for a 4-way facial qualified for an article. Over time, editors were able to build consensus for the position that pornbio needed to be tightened, thus what we have now has seen dozens upon dozens of articles deleted when judged via the new criteria. What's sad is that the only conclusion you will likely draw from the porn example is "If I keep at it, I'll get my way"; what I hope you'll take from it is that "my opinion on a matter does not me right and my opponents wrong; we just disagree". Tarc (talk) 17:28, 27 May 2015 (UTC)
That's my point. Consensus can change, or, rather, it can be discovered, and it is almost always discovered with discussion - with discussion about what the title should be and why. Not with discussion about building consensus for a title being a waste of time. Not with discussion about there needing to be moratoriums. Not with no discussion. If you look at the Yoghurt/Yogurt archives, most of the discussion is filled with nonsense like this section - the stonewallers avoiding discussion about the title in favor of discussion about not having discussion, and people like me replying why that's not the case, as I'm doing here. That's why it takes so long to develop consensus... because people keep coming up with excuses to avoid the process of discovering and developing consensus through discussion. Just like people in this section are trying to do. --В²C 18:28, 28 May 2015 (UTC)
As I feared, you did not fail to disappoint. Tarc (talk) 19:04, 28 May 2015 (UTC)
B2C: Discussion of a topic is productive and healthy. Incessant discussion of a topic is less so. That's a distinction you unfortunately don't seem to recognize – certainly not to judge from your unending invocation of one of the lamest edit wars in Wikipedia history as an exemplar of the value of persistence.

Fortunately, Wikipedia does recognize the distinction. It's why we have WP:PERENNIAL (with its attendant controls on how such debates can continue). It's why we have WP:DEADHORSE. Beyond a certain extreme, more isn't better.

Has debate on this topic reached that point? Perhaps; that's for the community to decide. If a temporary moratorium is imposed, please remember that that's not an end to discussion – it's simply an end to overly-frequent discussion. The topic can continue to be debated, but at more regulated intervals. You may call that stonewalling; personally I call it good sense. ╠╣uw [talk] 20:05, 28 May 2015 (UTC)

It was one of the lamest in history, but what made it lame was the incessant stonewalling. As soon as the incessant stonewalling stopped, the issue was resolved. What it took to get the incessant stonewallers to finally back down was a ton of work: a detailed pro/con comparison table and a detailed accounting of the absurd history of the discussion. We shouldn't have to go through anything like that here. We could instead just start talking about how to formulate the next RM discussion to make a consensus-supported resolution most likely, instead of talking about the opposite: a moratorium. --В²C 20:45, 28 May 2015 (UTC)
Sorry, but no – per WP:LAME, "the fact that an edit war occurred means that neither side was 'in the right all along'"... and I'd say that's especially true about an eight-year war over the letter H. That you seem not to recognize that is troubling, as is your characterization of all those who disagree as mere "stonewallers".
Not all repetitious debates are fated to overturn the status quo or settle cleanly; some simply lead to an entry on the perennial proposals page, or in other ways become so tiresome and wasteful that the community decides it can no longer stomach it. That may be the point we're approaching here. We could start doing other things to improve Wikipedia, instead of talking about the opposite: more RMs. ╠╣uw [talk] 12:31, 29 May 2015 (UTC)
It's not like change was being fueled by a small group. The problem was inherent and obvious, just like "Jane" is in this title. That meant and means NEW people would naturally, understandably repeatedly show up and suggest a change. That's the case here too. See the Jane section just below. --В²C 21:22, 29 May 2015 (UTC)
Guy, having recently read the archives in full, it is not correct to say that reference to Macauley was firmly rejected. Not at all. It was repeatedly supported, and spoken against only once or twice. There was slightly more objection to the "née". Paternalistic? That is an issue present at the time of her birth, and was and is extremely widespread. Before adopting the surname "Brown", the subject was well known by the name Macaulay, without a hint that it was unacceptable to the subject due to the paternalistic Western culture of naming children with their father's surname. The only thing I see as firmly rejected is "wife of" or "spouse of", largely due to these implying inherited notability, if not subjugation to a husband. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 02:02, 22 May 2015 (UTC)
Maybe you haven't checked all the debates. It would not surprise me: there have been a preposterous number. Guy (Help!) 14:58, 27 May 2015 (UTC)


  • There are currently 75 sources in the article, none of which refers to the subject as "Jane". In the discussion which ended with the move to "Sarah Jane Brown" (the current title), this name was proposed (as being a redirect at the time) but was never explained. Is there any source which mentions "Jane"? If yes, can it be shown here? (It should then be appended somewhere in the article.) Or is it WP:OR, and then could be peremptorily challenged and removed? Kraxler (talk) 17:46, 27 May 2015 (UTC)
  • "Prudence never did pose a threat to Sarah Jane Macaulay and today this smart, successful woman will prove just that." and "Sarah Jane Macaulay was born in Beaconsfield in October 1963, the eldest of three children." - The Guardian. Tarc (talk) 18:31, 27 May 2015 (UTC)
Thanks. (Looks like the CTRL+F function is broken on my computer, or doesn't work on the Guardian website.) Just for the record, I'm also vehemently opposed to wasting the community's time and effort. I'm just of the opinion that this is a problem that could be solved in five minutes, if... As that is seemingly not going to happen, I'll say farewell now to this issue. I suppose I'll have another look at it two years hence. Kraxler (talk) 19:06, 27 May 2015 (UTC)

Sarah Brown (Q2986943)[edit]

My advice to people wanting the title to be "Sarah Brown" with some form of disambiguation after the name is to be patient and wait, it may be possible for you to have "Sarah Brown" with no disambiguation in the title. Wikidata, which has now taken over the vast majority of links between wikis, has no need of disambiguation in the title, rather every item- and for us this means articles- is given a unique identity number. That number turns up on the wikidata page, but in use it does not appear nor does one need to remember it, when searching on wikidata the description of each item appears below, so searchers can find the article they are looking for, and this description can be as long as needed to distinguish the item. (Click on the edit links side bar on this article and see for yourself).

So why do I mention this here, its because it must not be beyond a sysyem which works within wikidata and between multiple wikimedia language and sister projects to work within a project; applying what wikidata does to interwiki links to en Wikipedia intra-wiki links. So rather than spending all your energy rehashing the same arguments here and getting angry and fustrated, may I suggest spending a fraction of that time and ingenuity in petitioning the devs at Mediawiki to bring searching by item number to Wikipedia.--KTo288 (talk) 08:14, 31 May 2015 (UTC)


It is possible to retain the current title but not display "Jane" like so. DrKiernan (talk) 08:49, 31 May 2015 (UTC)

Technically possible but it should not be done: it will only confuse editors readers about the correct page title. They might e.g. think the page is actually titled Sarah Brown, then wonder why they are not at the disambiguation page. Many browsers hide the page address so there is no other indication of the page title. per Wikipedia:DISPLAYTITLE it should only be used when "the article meets the criteria for a non-standard title format", so e.g. starts with a lowercase letter, includes suffixed or subscripted characters etc..--JohnBlackburnewordsdeeds 17:19, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
I doubt it could cause more confusion than the current title. --В²C 20:59, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
The current title works as a means of disambiguating the name from other Sarah Brown's. Rendering it as "Sarah Brown" does not. As well as the above I would draw your attention to the end of the relevant paragraph at WP:DISPLAYTITLE:
Since 2013 it is not possible to hide part of the title with <span style="display:none;">...</span>.
I.e. hiding part of a title has been explicitly disabled. Working around that with <span style="position:absolute; top: -9999px">Jane</span> is certainly not how this magic word is meant to be used.--JohnBlackburnewordsdeeds 22:01, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Altering the displayed title to something that is the title of a different page is obviously going to confuse. Attempting to do so is a WP:POINT violation. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 22:54, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    • The only reason we can't use the same title for multiple articles on WP is because we use the title in the URL - it's purely a technical limitation. If we did not use the title in the URL, like some other online encyclopedias, then we could use the same title for multiple articles as well. There is nothing confusing about it. DISPLAYTITLE is a nice work-a-round/compromise. It may have not been the intent to use it in cases like this, but I see no reason why it shouldn't be. --В²C 23:38, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
      • Unlike wikisource, Wikipedia is written for humans. Humans reference works by title. No two pages on Wikipedia should have the same title. Further, titles should not be ambiguous. "Sarah Brown" is ambiguous. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 23:44, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
        • Brittanica is written for humans. Humans reference works by title. No two pages on Brittanica should have the same title. Further, titles should not be ambiguous. "Washington" is ambiguous. And yet.... Washington Washington Washington. Yes, they have subtitles that disambiguate. We should too. Or continue to use parentheses for that purpose. But we should not create unrecognizable titles by inserting obscure middle names for the purpose of disambiguation. --В²C 16:08, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
          • Subtitles are part of the title. I expect the Britannica has no two articles sharing the same Title&Subtitle. Your argument about inserting obscure middle names has been made before, rebutted by responses that middle name disambiguation is common, and Jane has been used to reference this subject, including in two current references. It is not justification to confuse the big text at the top of the page with that of the disambiguation page. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 00:44, 4 June 2015 (UTC)
        • Yet the consensus of the previous discussion was to do just that. Tarc (talk) 16:30, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
          • Not true. The consensus for that question was not asked. All that was established was that there was no consensus for moving to the especially clumsy and contrived alternative that was proposed. --В²C 19:11, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
RE "the consensus of the previous discussion was to do just that." That's not quite true. The article was moved on RM6 in 2013 with a closing statement that found consensus not to keep the then current disambiguator (wife of Gordon Brown) followed by "So, given a set of several names that aren't all that great, I'm simply going to go with the most popular option here." [a headcount plurality] and frankly admitting that there was no consensus for any proposed new disambiguator and that policy was disregarded. All subsequent RMs could not agree on any particular different disambiguator, and I suppose there is still no consensus. But the truth is that there has never been a consensus for "Jane" in the middle. And that's the reason why this crops up time and again... Kraxler (talk) 19:09, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
Exactly. The current title has never had consensus support. --В²C 19:12, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
Due to personal bias, the two of you are reading into the RM what you wish to read, rather than what is actually there. Consensus was the previous title was bad, and that the current title is the one that had the most support out of the available options. The current title is a result of the consensus of the community, there's no wiggle room there. Tarc (talk) 19:26, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
We agree there is consensus for using "Jane" as being preferable to the "wife of ...". But that doesn't mean using "Jane" has consensus support. It's just temporary as lesser evil, until consensus support can be found for a title that is not "wife of ..." nor uses an obscure middle name. --В²C 20:18, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
But that doesn't mean using "Jane" has consensus support, but as a matter of fact it does mean exactly that; that you cannot accept that is not our concern. But you are certainly welcome to try again in, oh, June 2017 or so? Tarc (talk) 23:40, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
The current title found consensus in RM#6, ratified at WP:MR. ANy new move proposal should speak directly points made in RM#6 and its Move Review. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 00:39, 4 June 2015 (UTC)
The closer of #6 said, "I'm simply going to go with the most popular option here". That's not finding consensus for the most popular title. That's simply going with the title that happened to be "most popular" among those considered in that discussion. --В²C , 4 June 2015 (UTC)
There's substance to that, it belongs in the next nomination statement. So how to proceed, without annoying the rest of the community, and how to avoid a random half baked nomination in the meantime. I suggest where moratoria are suggested, RM nominations require a seconder. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 22:38, 4 June 2015 (UTC)

As I said above, I think we need a simple RM with three options:

  1. disambiguation using her middle name (i.e. the status quo); or
  2. disambiguation using her date of birth ("born 1963" or similar); or
  3. disambiguation using her birth name ("née Macaulay" or similar).

With luck, we will get a clear answer, and then I suggest a moratorium for at least a year. Ferma (talk) 16:38, 5 June 2015 (UTC)

  • The problem with doing something that simple is it does not capture consensus. Let's say the results are evenly divided 3 ways. That looks like no consensus. But it might be that most of those who select two of the options would favor either of those options over the third. That would indicate a consensus for either of those two options. But that's not captured unless you ask for second choice as well as first choice, or something like that. --В²C 21:16, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
    • With approval voting, we can simply allow people to select any of the options, so the one with the most support will emerge. So for example you or I might vote for the second and third option. If there is no clear consensus for a change, we should stick with the status quo. (To avoid another misfire like last month, perhaps it might be helpful for someone to sketch out what that sort of move request might look like, in sandbox somewhere, for the next time we are allowed to discuss it?) Ferma (talk) 21:31, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
And I think we need another move proposal like we need a hole in the head. And so do most of the people opining in the RfC above. Guy (Help!) 18:00, 9 June 2015 (UTC)